Thursday, October 27, 2016

Daily Corrections Clips


CDCR NEWS

Jason Anderson, Record

Twelve people were located in a small residence off of Argonaut Lane. Eleven others were located at another residence nearby. They were arrested on suspicion of numerous crimes, including marijuana cultivation, marijuana sales and conspiracy to cultivate and transport marijuana, authorities said.

The names of those arrested were not released. The Sheriff’s Office said the investigation was ongoing.

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office, the California Department of Corrections, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and Calaveras County Code Enforcement assisted in serving the search warrants.

Harvey Kahn, IECN

The State Department of Corrections has announced it has signed a contract with San Bernardino County allowing more long term jailed felons the chance to serve out sentences at one of the state’s minimum security conservation fire camps. Department spokesperson Bill Sessa said in a phone interview that there are many perks including earning time off sentences.

The Oak Glen Conservation (Fire) Camp was the first such facility and with a prison population of 160 is the largest among 43 in the state. The site was established 90 years ago by the former San Bernardino County Forestry Department. Sessa explained the plan is part of new legislation aimed to reduce the prison population. “People are not going to be let out of prison early and we are not lowering our standards. No one with a pattern of violent behavior is accepted. “You get one chance. If you are disruptive in any form, you are returned to an electronically fenced facility.”

CALIFORNIA PRISONS

Kevin D. Sawyer, The Pioneer

Students and faculty from California State University East Bay’s student-run newspaper, The Pioneer, visited the San Quentin State Prison in July.

A couple of years ago the idea struck me to reach out to my alma mater — California State University Hayward — from San Quentin because I wanted those on a familiar education path to experience some hidden truths about prison.

Several years ago, I initially invited The Pioneer to visit San Quentin News, an inmate-run newspaper, where I am the associate editor. One by one they have accepted the open invitation, beginning with former Pioneer editor-in-chief, Yousuf Fahimuddin and the paper’s past student sales executive, Yesica Ibarra, later followed by former student photojournalist, Valerie Smith.

CALIFORNIA INMATES

Tony Saavedra, Orange County Register

It’s a standard line in almost any Hollywood legal drama: A prosecutor tells a herd of reporters he won’t answer a question because “I don’t want to try this case in the court of public opinion.”

In real life, that premise might be changing.

Go to YouTube this week and punch in the words “Orange County District Attorney and Kenneth Clair” and you’ll find a legal drama playing out almost exclusively in the court of public opinion.

CALIFORNIA PAROLE

"Operation Boo" requires registered sex offenders to adhere to certain restrictions
Omari Fleming, NBC LA

State officials are cracking down on registered sex offenders, just as Halloween is around the corner.

It's called "Operation Boo," which requires that all registered sex offenders to adhere to certain curfews and restrictions between 5 p.m. and 5 a.m., starting on Halloween night. They also cannot put up Halloween decorations or give out candy to trick-or-treating children.

John Myers, The Los Angeles Times

Few California voters likely know much, if anything, about the state Board of Parole Hearings — from the qualifications of the 12 commissioners to their success in opening the prison gates for only those who can safely return to the streets.

And yet Gov. Jerry Brown’s sweeping overhaul of prison parole, Proposition 57, is squarely a question of whether those parole officials should be given additional latitude to offer early release to potentially thousands of prisoners over the next few years.

DEATH PENALTY

Randi Swisley, Auburn Journal

Two propositions on the November ballot address the death penalty.  They are discussed together here to allow easier reference as your make your decision on how to vote on each of them.

Proposition 62 asks voters if the death penalty in California should be eliminated and replaced with life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.
Today, people convicted of first-degree murder that includes “special circumstances,” such as multiple victims, hate crimes, or killing for financial gain, can be sentenced either to life imprisonment with no possibility of parole, or to death.

Eric Markowitz, Capital & Main

Of the 17 propositions on this year’s California ballot, few are as divisive as the issue of capital punishment. There are actually two separate initiatives targeting the death penalty: Proposition 62, which would abolish the death penalty and replace it with prison without the possibility of parole; and Proposition 66, which would speed up the process to send condemned murderers to the death chamber.

According to campaign finance disclosures compiled by the California Fair Political Practices Commission, much of the pro-death penalty campaign funding is coming directly from police and prison guard unions. The California Correctional Peace Officers Association (CCPOA) alone spent $498,304 on Prop. 62, while the Peace Officers Research Association of California spent $455,000 and the California Association of Highway Patrolmen ponied up $250,000 to keep capital punishment.

CORRECTIONS RELATED

Agnes Constante, NBC News

For Jay Ly, every workday is different.

Sometimes, he gets up at 6 a.m. to meet with contractors at the two currently under construction locations of a Cajun restaurant that he co-founded with friends called Stinkin Crawfish. Other times, he's at the restaurant's three existing branches, fixing the occasional clogged drain or broken power outlet.

He's also busy coordinating with a friend and business partner about the two new locations, which are slated to be up and running by early 2017, perhaps even sooner.

Cal Coast News

In June 2012, a San Luis Obispo jury convicted Hernandez of arson, terrorism in the form of a cross burning, terrorism in the form of arson targeting a person’s race and conspiracy to commit a crime. Hernandez also received a hate crime enhancement.

But, a California appellate court ruled in Aug. 2014 that the convictions of arson and terrorism in the form of arson are not valid when coupled with the cross burning count. The appellate court ordered a local judge to discount the two invalid convictions and re-sentence Hernandez.

California law enforcement opposes yet another reform measure, cites loopholes
Scott Thomas Anderson News Review

When she was 12, Jamie Savoy let out a cry for help that she says no one answered.

Facing abuse from an older adult, Savoy says she lashed out in self-defense and was repaid with a two-year stint in juvenile hall before getting turned back to the streets. The pain of being treated like a criminal at such a young age, however, set her on a self-destructive path of more crime. After she turned 18, the criminal justice system claimed her again, labeling Savoy a felon for life.

Twenty-five years after her first arrest, those scars are why she’s working with Sacramento Area Congregations Together to build support for California’s Proposition 57.

Meradith Hoddinott, KALW

Proposition 57 is all about how people get in and out of California’s prisons. It can be broken down into two parts.

First Prop 57 would change the way young people are tried in court. Right now, prosecutors can decide if defendants — as young as 14 — should be tried as adults. Prop 57 would ensure that they first get a hearing in juvenile court. There, a judge would decide if they should be transferred to the adult system. Stakes are high because sentences in the adult system are a lot harsher.

Patrick May, The Mercury News

Seven years after she was freed from captivity, Jaycee Dugard has kept a relatively low profile. Despite writing a couple of best-selling first-person books about a life defined by her 1991 kidnapping and subsequent near-slavery, her precise whereabouts remain a mystery. Dugard is single, according to interviews, and spends her time focusing on her children.

But now Dugard has come out with a political statement on Facebook.

“I’d promised myself I would not use FB for anything political but I’m asking you all to vote NO on prop 57,” Dugard wrote in a missive posted Oct. 21 at 4:21 p.m., referring to the state ballot proposition that would reduce time served for many criminals. “Other survivors like me should not have to worry when and if their rapist and/or their captor will get out. Phillip and Nancy Garrido kidnapped me in 1991 after he was released from prison having only served 11 out of 50 years for a previous rape.”

Richard Winton and Matt HamiltonContact, The Los Angeles Times

The man accused of killing two Palm Springs police officers during an ambush-style attack will face the death penalty, Riverside County Dist. Atty. Mike Hestrin announced Wednesday.

John Felix, 26, faces two counts of murder with the special circumstances of multiple murders, murder of a police officer in the line of duty and lying in wait.

Elizabeth Larson, Lake County News

CLEARLAKE, Calif. – The Clearlake City Council is set to discuss taking a stand against a proposition sponsored by the governor that would lead to new parole and sentencing provisions, and also will consider awarding a bid for work on the city's visitor center project.

The council will meet at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 27, for a closed session to discuss negotiations for properties at 14440 and 14480 Olympic Drive before the public portion of the meeting begins at 6 p.m. in the council chambers at Clearlake City Hall, 14050 Olympic Drive.

Eitan Arom, Jewish Journal

Martin Cruz owes his freedom to the California juvenile justice system.

His childhood essentially ended at age 8, when he saw a friend shot five times and killed. Soon enough, he was part of a gang, and at 16, after years of cycling in and out of the juvenile justice system, a district attorney tried to send him to adult court.

“If I had been sent to adult court, I would be done,” he told an audience at Temple Israel of Hollywood (TIOH) on a recent Tuesday evening. “I would probably still be in prison today.”

OPINION

Charles Lane, The Washington Post

You’d think Proposition 62, a referendum to abolish California’s death penalty and replace it with life without parole, including for the 749 current occupants of death row, would win easily on Nov. 8.

Democrats dominate this state; their 2016 national platform advocated an end to capital punishment. Former president Jimmy Carter, left-populist icon Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), the state’s major labor unions and 38 newspaper editorial boards are urging a “yes” vote.

Ventura STAR

Proposition 57 has the potential to reverse how we view, and handle, the release of prison inmates in California.

Gov. Jerry Brown drafted the initiative to, in part, overturn an action he took in 1977 during his first stint as governor, when he signed legislation that banned open-ended sentencing. That, he believes, has led to the explosion of prison inmates in the state, which peaked at about 173,000 in 2006 and spurred federal court orders to reduce our prison population.


John Phillips, OC Register

Every once in a while the American people decide to change their mind on a contentious, hot-button issue of the day. It usually happens gradually, as people age and newer generations with different opinions replace them. We’ve seen this happen on a large scale with policy regarding civil rights, gay marriage and how we treat the mentally ill.

As we look back on these changes, most would say they are for the better, but rapidly shifting attitudes toward drugs and addiction have the potential to take the Golden State to a very dark place – in the form of Proposition 57.